DAILY DOSE: Deadly quake kills over 1000; Tension mounts ahead of Roe v Wade decision.

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DEADLY QUAKE.

Afghanistan has suffered over a thousand casualties as a major earthquake has rocked the country. According to the Associated Press, “A powerful earthquake struck a rural, mountainous region of eastern Afghanistan early Wednesday, killing 1,000 people and injuring 1,500 more in one of the deadliest quakes in decades, the state-run news agency reported. Officials warned that the already grim toll may still rise.” As of the writing of the daily dose, details remain uncertain. Due to the geography surrounding the area where is the earthquakes took place, there are fears that the natural disaster they also cause deadly landslides. https://bit.ly/39MRylJ


AN EXPLOSIVE SITUATION.

As the United States Supreme Court gets ready to issue its ruling on Roe vs Wade, nerves are beginning to fray. People on both sides of the issue are worried about what the other side may do. The National Abortion Federation is one of organizations cited in an Associated Press article, “The group and the hundreds of abortion clinics it represents have been on ‘heightened alert’ since the opinion leaked, Fowler said. The organization has staff who specialize in security on call around the clock. They go out to clinics to do drills with employees and volunteers on scenarios such as bomb threats or active shooters and advise them on things like where to position security cameras. They also conduct safety assessments at the homes of physicians, monitor online threats and consult with local law enforcement.” It would be nice to say that cooler heads will prevail, but it is 2022, and that means it’s time to worry. https://bit.ly/3bkjUnz


MULTINATIONAL LIP SERVICE.

Small plastic containers, call sachets, is often used to you to sell things like shampoo, conditioner, and laundry detergent and developing countries. Those packets are a major source of plastic waste in the ocean. You know lover, the multinational company, has vowed to decrease their use access packaging. But an investigation by Reuters has proven that they’ve done anything but cut back. “They have also helped fuel a global waste crisis. Made of layers of plastic and aluminum, sachets are nearly impossible to recycle and aren’t biodegradable. They’re littering neighborhoods, jamming garbage dumps, choking waterways and harming wild creatures. Yet even as Unilever executives have publicly decried the environmental harm done by this packaging, the multinational has worked to undercut laws aimed at eliminating sachets in at least three Asian countries, Reuters has learned.” And these big companies wonder why people harbor strong distrust against them. https://reut.rs/3QJbqaa


LEADING LONG-COVID THEORIES.

Long covid remains one of the great Mysteries of the current pandemic. An article in Science looked at the three front-running theories. Here is a quick summary of the three: “The cells and tissues that control blood flow are damaged and the blood’s tendency to clot is amplified. Minute blood clots, leftover from the viral assault or fueled by its aftermath, might be gumming up the body’s circulation, to disastrous effect from the brain to joints… the coronavirus keeps hurting people by stubbornly enduring in the body, even after acute infection passes…an immune system gone haywire even 8 months after they’d first tested positive.” https://bit.ly/3n5NqjV


OPEN SOURCE TO THE RESCUE.

Artificial intelligence has been the source of consternation for many well-informed people in the tech industry. The simple fact that humans are able to pass on their biases to AI is more than enough to give them pause. One of the ways of addressing potential problems is by breaking the stranglehold big Tech has on AI technology. The few open-source AI as a solution to the problem. According to Nature, “An international team of around 1,000 largely academic volunteers has tried to break big tech’s stranglehold on natural-language processing and reduce its harms. Trained with US$7-million-worth of publicly funded computing time, the BLOOM language model will rival in scale those made by firms Google and OpenAI, but will be open-source. BLOOM will also be the first model of its scale to be multilingual.” https://go.nature.com/3NcClIl

Thanks for reading. Let’s be careful out there.


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